Blues was not “slave music [since] . . . Blues musicians, roaming from town to town with guitar[s] . . . could not have existed prior to Emancipation because our people did not enjoy freedom of movement during slavery” (ya Salaam, 1995, p. 30). Therefore, the Blues was a musical genre of people who were prepared for and headed toward liberation.
The Blues women were the sirens of freedom, only reachable after death, according to the spiritualists, whose music remained in the realm of religion. Blues music, labeled by religionists as Devil’s Music, “is a black cultural art form, blues is a ‘living archive,’ a form of ‘recollection’ that provides a ‘coded history of black injury,’ resulting from historically entrenched power relations.”
In 1999, a well-connected politician called me on the phone, early one morning, instructing me to write down a fax number, starting with area code 202 for Washington, D.C. I knew it was important.
She asked me if I had a company and an Employee Identification Number (EIN) or tax ID number. I said I did. She said, “Write a blues about the 2000 census. Fax it with an invoice for $2,499 on your letterhead to the number I gave you.
One hour later, I sent the CENSUS BLUES to the U.S. Census Bureau to the attention of the person connected to my politician friend. I got paid because I could compose music and I had a corporate EIN.
One of the first documents I give my Speech Communication students is a handout entitled HOW TO START A BUSINESS.
How to start a business
Choose Your Business Name, Inc. (or LLC) and decide if you will be: (30 minutes)
Product or Service (for profit) or Mission Statement (non-profit)
I was in business for two years before I got that call. My company was not making much money. If I got a check for singing, I put it in my business account. I paid the corporate tax and filed a tax return as a sole proprietor most years. My company grew because of the music I recorded and books I published. I got substantial orders from school principals for one or more of my books. In 2007, I incorporated my non-profit organization and became a lecturer, presenter, and producer of several programs. After releasing my two personal CDs in 1995 and 2005, I produced eight compilation CDs of music from members of http://wijsf.org
In 2019, we published the first issue of Musicwoman Magazine. In 2020, we published the second issue and the first issue of Musicman Magazine. In 2021, We published both magazines, individually, and a flip book of both magazines.
There is no doubt in my mind that having a business has been beneficial to me and our 380 members!
My response to Andromeda Turre who asked me what it means to be a woman in jazz.
Being a woman in jazz is the crux of my existence. 70 years ago, I sang Somebody Loves Me, onstage. The footlights mesmerized me. But the music captured my heart. In my later years, promoting women musicians, globally, is my mission for Women in Jazz South Florida, Inc. Visit us at www.wijsf.org
We see a world where we, the people, no longer buy into the lie that the booksellers have been handing us about providing us with what we’re wanting to read – because we’ve now realized, beyond all doubt, that they’ve been providing us with what they want us to read in order to satisfy their own self-serving purposes.
Thus, we see a world where bookstores have changed their priorities entirely, so that now when you walk into a bookstore, the books which are most likely to bring you happiness and fulfillment are displayed prominently in the front of the store – while the books which were written solely for the purpose of frightening you or lining the author’s pockets are relegated to the obscure shelves in the back of the store.
We also see children’s books, now, written and distributed so that the child’s highest and best interests are served; and where the subject matter of these books is meant, not to subtly encourage our children to become better consumers, conformers, or soldiers, but to encourage them to be more resourceful, creative, and free-thinking people.
And finally, we see a world where authors, publishers, and booksellers alike have all moved away from praising and offering us stark tragedies. Now they have lightened up and filled the shelves with books that are meant to help us, books that warm our hearts, and books that have happy endings.
While whites in the jazz music industry got rich, black musicians did not reap equal benefits. The industry caused a great deal of exploitation and discrimination by whites against blacks. Rex Stewart said, “Where the control is, the money is. Do you see any of us running any record companies, booking agencies, radio stations, music magazines?” (Kofsky, 1998, p. 19).
Throughout the years, several people and organizations have felt me worthy of being honored. Those moments are documented here.
Priscilla Dames (right) of Wingspan Seminars in Miami, FL nominated
Joan Cartwright for the 2011 Pea’ce Award.
Thanks to Howard Mandel and Laurie Dapice for honoring me as a 2019 Jazz Journalist Association (JJA) Jazz Hero.
Thanks to Brian Zimmerman, Digital Editor of Jazziz Magazine for presenting the award. Thanks to Marika Guyton for organizing the award ceremony. Photos: Gregory Reed
Thanks to Old Dillard Foundation for partnering with Women in Jazz South Florida, Inc. for this program
The universe provides. Last week I got the news that the Speech class I taught for 3 years is moving online, leaving me without income in June-July. I cried. I felt helpless. However, as things always go, I have the opportunity to teach 3 classes at PBSC in Palm Beach Gardens, starting May 15, through the summer.
The Jazz Journalists Association is pleased to announce the 2019 Jazz Heroes: Advocates, altruists, activists, aiders, and abettors of jazz who have had a significant impact in their local communities. The ‘Jazz Hero’ awards, made annually on the basis of nominations from community members, are presented by their local fans and friends in conjunction with the JJA’s annual Jazz Awards honoring significant achievements in jazz music and journalism. Please spread the word of Jazz Heroes you know as neighbors and admire, via your own social media posts. See all JJA Jazz Awards for 2019 Jazz Heroes
Dr. Joan Cartwright
2019 South Florida Jazz Hero
Dr. Joan Cartwright is a professor of Speech Communication at Southeastern College in West Palm Beach, Florida and in 2017 completed her Doctorate in Business Administration/ Marketing (DBA) at Northcentral University in Arizona, but it’s for her writing, composing, lecturing, producing, research and documentation concerning women composers (especially) in jazz and blues, and for her founding in 2007 of the non-profit Women In Jazz South Florida, Inc., that the Jazz Journalists Association hails her as 2019 South Florida Jazz Hero.
Dr. Cartwright is clearly a person of many parts and high energy. In the 12 years of its existence, WIJSF has released six compilation albums, comprising 63 songs from 45 women composers. Since 2008, she has hosted 300 episodes on MUSICWOMAN Radio, published four Catalogs of Women in Arts & Business and Musicwoman Magazine’s premier edition. She has published 14 books with her own FYI Communications, Inc. on lulu.com. She is an ASCAP-affiliated publisher and songwriter, a member of National League of American Pen Women, and through WIJSF maintains international relations with diverse peer groups. She blogs and has contributed to the South Florida Times, In Focus Magazine, Global Woman Magazine and Encyclopedia of the African Diaspora. She has an impressive array of academic accreditations and has been honored by several professional associations. But one senses that the devotion of her WIJSF members, and the continuous support of her daughter Mimi Johnson, with whom she owns MJTV Network (“Positive Influential Television”), is based on personal qualities that imbue her larger projects.
Among those is a goal to build the Musicwoman Archive to house the musical and literary works of women musicians and provide performance and educational center where women musicians can thrive. In educational workshops Dr. Cartwright presents, which highlight the pitfalls and benefits of the music business, she insists that “Knowing music theory is a step in the right direction for any singer who truly wants to excel in the world of music!” Yet her own breadth of endeavors — acting, singing, media creation, marketing, advertising, public speaking, and public relations skills as well as command of theory are arrows in her quiver — attests to the reach she models for all women, all artists, anyone whose ambitions extend to being creative, innovative, expressive, self-realized, in the moment while communing with others, sharing experience, telling truth, seeking beauty — in other words, living as a Jazz Hero. ~Howard Mandel
In July 2017, I completed my Doctorate in Business Administration/Marketing. I had been teaching Speech Communication since February 2016. I am still there. However, I only teach this class every four months and this does not sustain me. I had been teaching at Keiser University in Pembroke Pines but that was a commute of 100 miles per day, three days a week, and my car finally broke down. This commute cost me $250 in gas and tolls per month and the university did not reimburse me for those funds.
In the past three years, I have submitted hundreds of applications to schools in Florida like FAU, Palm Beach State College, Miami-Dade College, Strayer College, Lynn University, Broward College, and others. I had one interview in 2016, and nothing since then.
In actuality, very little has changed. White women continue to dominate the employment rolls. Black women are rarely seen waitressing, as airline stewardesses, on corporate boards, or as professors in the academy.
SPA Faculty Spring 2017
Last week, I found this article that explains why I am not getting hired to teach:
In fall 2016, of the 1.5 million faculty in degree-granting postsecondary institutions, 53 percent were full time and 47 percent were part-time. Faculty included professors, associate professors, assistant professors, instructors, lecturers, assisting professors, adjunct professors, and interim professors.
Of all full-time faculty in degree-granting postsecondary institutions in fall 2016, 41 percent were White males; 35 percent were White females; 6 percent were Asian/Pacific Islander males; 4 percent were Asian/Pacific Islander females; 3 percent each were Black males, Black females, and Hispanic males; and 2 percent were Hispanic females.1 Those who were American Indian/Alaska Native and those who were of Two or more races each made up 1 percent or less of full-time faculty in these institutions.
The racial, ethnic, and sex distribution of faculty varied by academic rank. For example, among full-time professors, [82% were white] 55 percent were White males, 27 percent were White females, 7 percent were Asian/Pacific Islander males, and 3 percent were Asian/Pacific Islander females. Black males, Black females, and Hispanic males each accounted for 2 percent of full-time professors. Source: https://nces.ed.gov/fastfacts/display.asp?id=61
This reported showed that “For every full-time Black faculty member at a public college or university, there are 42 full-time, degree-seeking Black undergraduates. Forty institutions employ no full-time Black instructors. On 44% of public campuses, there are 10 or fewer full-time Black faculty members across all ranks and academic fields.” [Source]
My conclusion is that I need to find some other women of color with doctorates who have been unable to obtain employment. The travesty is that African-American women are the most educated group in the USA but are only 2-3% of teachers in the academy. We have hundreds of thousands of dollars in student loans to repay but cannot get jobs with good salaries to pay off our debts.
Colleges and universities (in class or online) have no problem taking our money, signing us up for financial aid, knowing well that the policy of their institutions is to avoid hiring us. This is racial discrimination of the highest order. We suffer from gender discrimination as well and those of us who are middle-aged or above suffer from age discrimination.
Even at historically black colleges and universities like Howard University, a historically black institution in Washington, D.C., the faculty is only 58% black.
The disproportionate number of black, tenure-track college and university instructors — one out of every five — are clustered at 72 historically black four-year institutions that report the race of their employees. This despite the fact that those schools account for just 1.7% of all faculty nationwide.
Many predominantly white four-year public and nonprofit colleges and universities that have been promising for years to improve the diversity of their teaching ranks have made almost no progress in doing so.
It is time to bring this travesty to light. It is time for women of color to step up to the plate and call out the universities and colleges in this country for blatant racial, gender, and age discrimination. Perhaps, a class-action suit against colleges and universities will help to solve this problem in the USA.
Accreditation does now require diversity.
Accreditation is a voluntary, nongovernmental process involving the self-regulation of higher education that serves two purposes: assuring the public of quality and fostering institutional improvement. Accrediting agencies in the U.S. serve a broad range of institutions, thus making it difficult to implement diversity regulations across the board. Many agencies use standardized diversity policies or recommend that colleges and universities create their own objectives in this area, while others have relatively few or no requirements included in their accreditation standards. [Source]
Regarding diversity for the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges stated that, “When peer reviewers evaluate a school for accreditation, they look to see if it claims to promote diversity and inclusion in its mission statement, and if so, they assess the institution’s efforts to do so” (Wheelan, 2005). [Source]
The Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS) is the largest national accrediting organization of degree-granting institutions that offer programs in professional, technical, and occupational fields. Perliter Walters-Gilliam, ACICS associate vice president of quality enhancement and training, says the council does not specifically have a diversity requirement in its accreditation standards. “The expectation is that diversity is included in the planning document every campus is required to complete,” Walters-Gilliam says. Specifically, each institution must complete an assessment of the effectiveness of its own diversity and inclusion efforts. [Source]
The Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC) is a regional accrediting agency serving public and private higher education institutions throughout California, Hawaii, and the Pacific, as well as a limited number of institutions outside the U.S. in countries such as the United Arab Emirates and Armenia. The commission uses a diversity policy in its accreditation guidelines, holding schools to both societal standards of institutional behavior and its own subset of standards. “Quality and diversity are profoundly connected in pursuing goals in the mission statements of colleges and universities themselves: goals of expanding knowledge, educating capable citizens, and serving public needs,” the policy states. [Source]
A poll I conducted on Facebook in March revealed that 70% of Black women professors are adjuncts, meaning that they have little job security and no benefits. “And most of those [30%] that are tenured work at HBCU’s[, while] only 2 percent work in primarily white institutions,” according to a Facebook poster.
Some 73 percent of all faculty positions are off the tenure track, according to a new analysis of federal data by the American Association of University Professors. “For the most part, these are insecure, unsupported positions with little job security and few protections for academic freedom,” reads AAUP’s “Data Snapshot: Contingent Faculty in U.S. Higher Ed.” The report is based on the most recent data from the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System, from 2016 (Flaherty, 2018).
For three years, I have taught Speech Communication at a South Florida vocational college for medical students. I teach in March, July, and October. My bills are every month. I have not been able to acquire another course in my discipline – Business Administration/Marketing. One woman responded to my question: “Should we file a class action suit against colleges and universities” in this way, “I agree, Black women, in particular, we are the most educated of the groups and yet we continue to be pushed to the margins. She stated further that, “The problem is, although the research shows this, Black women would be reluctant to come aboard [for a class action suit] because it would kill their careers in higher education.”
In my opinion, some of us have nothing to lose and everything to gain.
In response to this post, a young MBA student from California, called me, today (April 4, 2019) to say that one reason why I might not be getting a response to my job applications is that I graduated from a university that is ASBCP accredited but not AACSB accredited, which is preferred.
ACBSP is a leading accrediting agency in the learning outcomes category. Like the AACSB, ACBSP has a rigorous review process to ensure programs meet accreditation standards, including assigning a mentor to help schools complete a plan for self-study. For more information on these accreditations go to https://programs.online.utica.edu/articles/aacsb-vs-acbsp-mba-accreditation
Ageism is more of a problem for women seeking employment.
A few years ago, the San Francisco Federal Reserve released one of the largest-ever studies on age discrimination in the workforce. After strategically submitting more than 40,000 fake applications to low-paying jobs often held by older workers (administrative assistants, janitorial staff, etc.), they found that young and middle-aged applicants had higher callback rates than older ones, and older female applicants fared far worse than their male counterparts. However, “Workers age 40 and up are protected by the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), which forbids employers from treating applicants or employees less favorably because of their age through all aspects of employment. This does not protect employees under age 40, though some states have laws that do. ADEA also protects employees from harassment and from any employment policies that, specifically, have a negative impact on employees 40 or older” (Castle, 2019).
Harper, S. R. (2018). Black male student-athletes and racial inequities in NCAA Division I college sports: 2018 edition. Los Angeles: University of Southern California, Race and Equity Center.
Harper, S. R., Smith, E. J., & Davis III, C. H. F. (2018). A critical race case analysis of Black undergraduate student success at an urban university. Urban Education, 53(1), 3-25.
Mayhew, M. J., Rockenbach, A. N., Bowman, N. A., Seifert, T. A., Wolniak, G. C., Pascarella, E. T., & Terenzini, P. T. (2016). How college affects students (Vol. 3): 21st-century evidence that higher education works. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.